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Travelling Tradies Launches Crowd Funding Campaign to Improve Mental Health in Construction Workers

Travelling Tradies have launched its Pozible Crowdfunding Campaign which aims to raise over $30,000 by 31st October 2019. Founded in 2017 by Adam Valastro, Travelling Tradies is a global exchange platform that create long term opportunities for qualified Tradies to travel affordably so they can have a life changing adventure, improve their health and wellbeing and become a global-local. Through the platform, Travelling Tradies will connect qualified Tradies to hostels and venues around the world where they can exchange their skills a few hours a day for food and accommodation.

Research shows, 8 Australians take their own lives everyday (Lifeline), with people who work in the Construction industry being twice as likely to take their own lives. Further research shows that, 1 in 4 tradies currently struggle with mental health. Travelling Tradies surveyed over 100 Tradies in 2018, survey findings have shown that the toxic “macho” culture, feeling stuck, working long weeks and not making time for themselves or their families have contributed to the Tradies feeling burnt-out, uninspired and depressed. With studies also showing that it is these types of environments and experiences that contribute to the high suicide rate in men and the construction industry in Australia.

In 2014, Adam set off to South America after receiving news that two of his colleagues had suddenly taken their lives in the same week. Adam was working over 70 hours a week at the time and making good money but he constantly felt depressed and unfulfilled. He would often turn to alcohol and drugs to try and help fill the void inside. When Adam set off to South America, he set a goal to be overseas for at least 6 months. However, in Adam’s first month abroad, he discovered he had churned through 1/3 of his allocated budget. It was in this moment Adam approached the hostel he was staying in and traded his skills in return for food, accommodation and local experiences.

Through trading his skills, Adam was able to travel to 11 countries and with a total spend of under $12,000 AUD.

In 2017 Adam returned to Australia and founded Travelling Tradies, feeling rejuvenated and inspired he made it his mission to share his journey and re-create the experience for other tradies as it had such a life changing effect on him.

In July 2018, Adam and a small group of tradies completed a Pilot Trip to Brazil where they tested their ability to deliver international travel in a skills exchange scenario to four hostels: El Misti Hostel, Yolo Hostel, Green Haven Hostel and Bossa Nova Hostel. They assisted with general maintenance and hostel upkeep including small plumbing jobs, mounting TV’s, shelves, gardening, landscaping, fixing furniture, roof leaks and painting.

Travelling Tradies hopes to raise over $30,000 which will go towards creating a basic database and web platform to facilitate the global exchange program, with a stretch target of $65,000 and S100,000. If accomplished, the stretch target of $65,000 will provide the global platform with UI and UX development, further portal development and a server. $100,000 will provide the platform developments above, funding for further implementation of technology globally and a global budget for marketing and advertising costs.

Hostels and venues from Philippines, Thailand, Brazil, Bali, Peru, Ecuador, Galapagos, Colombia, Argentina and France have already signed up to participate in the program in 2020 and 2021 including the original four venues that participated in the Pilot Trip in Brazil 2018.

The Pozible Crowdfunding Campaign ends on 31 October and pledges (in exchange for rewards) can be made online through the Travelling Tradies Pozible campaign site. Click here to contribute to the campaign.

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